Two of Blumhouse’s Welcome to the Blumhouse films premiered on Amazon this week, but to drum up anticipation for the unique horror movie series, Fantastic Fest and Fangoria are hosting a four-night watch party event showing all four thrillers from Amazon Studios and Blumhouse Television, with post-screening Q&As with each filmmaker moderated by Aneesh Chaganty, Karyn Kusama, and April Wolfe.

To celebrate the watch parties, Mondo has created two new double feature posters by artist Gary Pullin that /Film will be giving away to a lucky contest winner. Find out how to win our Welcome to the Blumhouse poster giveaway below.

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Bloodthirsty Review

The notion of hunger is vast and can be applied to an array of different desires. For the stereotypical starving artist, hunger usually comes in the form of fame, success, and basic needs. Writer/director Amelia Moses creatively applies the concept of hunger and desire to the werewolf sub-genre with her latest film, Bloodthirsty.

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How to Deter a Robber Review

Boredom and stress are a dangerous combination during the holidays. Dealing with an overbearing family, a lingering assignment for college applications, and trying to entertain an aloof partner can make anyone search for an escape. Writer/director Maria Bissell alleviates holiday doldrums and the stress of growing up by crafting a uniquely comical home invasion movie with her feature debut, How to Deter a Robber

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Its difficult to open up to people, isnt it? We all have our secrets and if theyre disclosed, the person listening can either tell others, judge you for it, or use it against you. And yet, as humans, we yearn for a personal connection with someone that we can trust with our innermost thoughts, desires, and secret personal lives. Writer/director Jill Gevargizian fervidly addresses this need for connection through the lonely life of a hairdresser in The Stylist

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Teddy Review

The only constant thing in life is change. A simple statement but profoundly complex given the effects time has on our emotions, physical bodies, and maturation. Werewolf stories utilize physical transformation on a thematic level in various ways, but at the heart of their stories is an aspect of the uncontrollable loss of self through physical alterations. This sub-genre of horror gives glimpses into our resistance to change and is one reason why it resonates with audiences multiple times over. Despite change being a universal experience, there are still parts of ourselves we claw to hold onto. Twin directors (Ludovic and Zoren Boukherma) explore these themes in their sophomore film, Teddy. A thirsty intensity of young angst and love, Teddy is a tale of ravenous revenge and resistance towards change.  Read More »

Fantastic Fest 2020

Fantastic Fest 2020 is going (mostly) virtual this year, and unlike many of the other film festivals of the pandemic era, this one is opening its digital doors to every person in the United States. While there will be a couple of in-person events in Austin, Texas, the annual home of the festival, most of the screenings will be free for anyone to watch in the U.S. Get the line-up below. Read More »

The film festival circuit has taken another casualty amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Austin’s Fantastic Fest, a hugely popular genre festival that has been running for more than 15 years, announced that it is canceling its 2020 edition. However, Fantastic Fest has hopes that it can hold a virtual program to replace this year’s festival, and commit to a physical festival in 2021.

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Phil Tippett: Mad Dreams and Monsters Review

A common complaint in film these days is that there is too much CGI. Computer graphics have not only diminished the effectiveness of monsters in genre films, but they have put practical effects and stop-motion artists out of work. While technological advancements have their perks and their place, many moviegoers believe that practical effects will always give off a more tangible viewing experience, arousing a deeper fear than any creature designed solely on a computer. Writer/director duo Gilles Penso and Alexandre Poncets documentary Phil Tippett: Mad Dreams and Monsters reintroduces audiences to a special effects legend while also spotlighting the impact stop-motion animation has had on the movie industry despite the emergence of CGI.

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The McPherson Tape

One of the joys of attending Fantastic Fest is discovering hidden or forgotten gems through its repertory programming. Last year they played the French thriller Dial Code Santa Claus, which is about a kid forced to fend off against a home invader on Christmas, which came out a couple of years before Macaulay Culkin ate his cheese pizza in Home Alone, and was never released in the US.  This year they offered a different yet equally fascinating “lost” film. This time around, Fantastic Fest audiences were treated to a one-time-only screening of what has been called the very first horror found-footage movie The McPherson Tape, made in 1989 – 10 years before The Blair Witch Project. 

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One of the defining traits of a mother is her unconditional love. No matter how rotten a child can be, a mother’s love can be undying and never waiver through troubled waters. It is both a blessing and a curse – this endless devotion and sacrifice that comes with being a parent. But just how far does that love go? How much can one parent give and risk in order to help a child that is seemingly hopeless?

In her sophomore feature Pelican Blood, writer/director Katrin Gebbe captures the immense dedication that mothers can exude despite the most defiant and dangerous kids they try to nurture and protect. 

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